Grassroots Grant Awardee Announcement:

The Haywood County Arts Council (HCAC) is excited to announce that seven local arts organizations were recently awarded collectively over $27,000 through the Grassroot Grant program. “We were very impressed by the number and quality of applications we received,” says Morgan Beryl, HCAC Executive Director. 

Since 1977, the North Carolina Arts Council’s Grassroots Arts Program has provided North Carolina citizens access to quality arts experiences. Using a per capita based formula, the program provides funding for the arts in all 100 counties of the state through partnerships with local arts councils. HCAC serves as the North Carolina Arts Council’s partner in awarding grants to local organizations for arts programs in Haywood County. 

The HCAC Board of Directors, who approve the funding recommendation made by an ad hoc committee of both board members and at large arts community members, were incredibly excited at the variety of artistic mediums and activities the grant is funding. “Increasing diversity both in terms of who we serve and the types of art programming we support is a major focus for HCAC for 2023” says Stephanie Kea, HCAC Board Member, Tuscola High School art teacher, and chair of the HCAC Program & Events Committee. 


The awardees and their activities are:

Afterschool Arts Program at FUMC of Waynesville – The Afterschool Program began in August of 2016 after the principal at Waynesville Middle School, members of law enforcement, and the Department of Social Services brought forth a need for safe, supervised after school care for middle school students. The program is offered to any middle school aged child free of charge. The Afterschool Program is collaborating with the HCAC to connect students to local artists. The goal is to have one art opportunity each month of the school year led by artists with different skills and passions.

The Daydreamz Project – Daydreamz Project provides unique art-making possibilities for people of all ages, backgrounds, and abilities; offering opportunities to explore creativity, cultures and community together. The Daydreamz Project’s goal is to make arts accessible to all. Artists work primarily with disadvantaged groups, from isolated elders and at-risk youth, to shelter residents and people with disabilities.  Multiple lantern making workshops will be held in November and on December 2 at HCAC during Art after Dark. The stroll will occur on December 4. “Lantern Parades are celebrated worldwide by many cultures and bring light to the winter darkness, harken seasonal celebrations, and add a sense of magic to all festivities,” said Starr Hogan, Artistic Director Daydreamz Project.

Folkmoot USA – Folkmoot USA is a non-profit arts organization that fosters the vibrancy of many cultures in one community. Programs are based on cultural exchange and social inclusion. Our 40,000 ft. sg. community center is a multi-stakeholder, year-round resource for arts and cultural engagement, educational enrichment, creative entrepreneurship, and community development. The grant helps pay for performers and advertising for FolkmootLIVE, the in-house live concert production program. FolkmootLIVE is a new endeavor for Folkmoot and has 10-12 shows per year at the Queen Auditorium ranging from American traditional music, world music, storytelling that further the mission of Folkmoot USA. 

HART – HART is a non-profit whose mission is to produce community theater plays and musicals featuring talent from the region and to offer educational opportunities for young people, and adults, interested in pursuing a career in the performing arts. Kids at HART, HART’s youth drama program, will produce the full scale production of the Broadway musical “Children of Eden” about the book of Genesis covering Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel, and Noah and the flood.

Haywood Community Band – The Haywood Community Band is an organized concert band for community musicians. The project goals are to acquire new music for the 2022-23 season, and provide rehearsal space to prepare the season’s music.

Haywood Choral Society – The Haywood Choral Society is a volunteer organization that provides an opportunity for interested singers to come together for the enjoyment of singing, and performing, through the preparation and presentation of two major public concerts. The project goals are to perform and preserve great choral music, both new and old, secular and sacred. To make that music available to the general public at no charge. 

Voices of the Laurel – Founded in 1996, Voices in the Laurel (VIL) is beginning its 27th season as a premiere Children’s and Youth Choir in western North Carolina. Based in Haywood County, the program currently consists of three performing ensembles that rehearse weekly during the school year. In the upcoming season, VIL will expand its program in three ways in the performances of the Holiday Concert on 11/20/22, and the 27th Season Spring Concert on 05/20/23. The expansion includes: (1) the addition of an adult ensemble, Legacy; (2) outreach and marketing to be more inclusive of our community at large, increasing the number of Asian, Latino, and African-American members of VIL, and to provide more diversity in repertoire; (3) expansion of our staff to support the additional ensemble responsibilities, marketing, and recruitment.

Artist Support Grant applications submissions are now closed and award announcements are expected in early January 2023.